HONOLULU (KHNL) -- A Kailua man who says he killed his mother and aunt two years ago because he thought they were vampires was found not guilty Wednesday. The first-degree murder trial lasted about five minutes. In the end, Micah White was acquitted by reason of insanity.
With heavy hearts, the family of Micah White arrived at Circuit Court. The show of support brought a smile to the face of the man charged with double-murder.
"This is the most family I've seen in a long time," White said.
The 22-year-old admits he stabbed his mother and aunt repeatedly, poured gasoline on them, then set them on fire.
"This was a case that, despite all the speculation, did not involve drugs, but did involve a very serious mental illness, which had previously been undiagnosed," deputy public defender Susan Arnett said.
Prosecutors did not dispute that during the jury-waived trial. The judge found the defendant could not distinguish between right and wrong at the time of the rampage, and commits him to the Hawaii State Hospital.
"I think he's going to the right place," Samuel White, the defendant's father, said. "I don't believe that he should be in prison."
Not only is Sam White the father of the defendant, he was the husband of one victim and the brother of the other.
White must remain at the State Hospital until doctors determine he is well enough, and is no longer a danger to himself or to society. He can apply for release as early as 90 days after he enters the facility.
"I think he should be in for the, you know, for the rest of his life," deputy prosecutor Don Pacarro said. "What he did was atrocious."
For one family, it's a tough way to learn about mental illness.
"I really don't know much about it, did not know this was there," Sam White said.